Billionaire Baron's Former Wife Sought by Swiss for Trial

Associated Press

Authorities said Monday they will ask neighboring Liechtenstein to extradite the former wife of billionaire Swiss tycoon Baron Hans Heinrich von Thyssen-Bornemisza for trial on embezzlement charges.

Justice Ministry spokesman Joerg Kistler said a formal request will be handed to Liechtenstein's ambassador to Switzerland, Prince Heinrich von Liechtenstein.

Kistler said the Brazilian-born baroness, Denise Shorto, was charged with embezzlement and the illegal transfer of sequestered property. He would not provide details of the case.

Police officials who spoke on condition of anonymity said the charges were connected to the multimillion dollar settlement Shorto obtained from her husband after a 1984 divorce in London. The couple had been married 17 years.

The baroness was arrested Friday and is now being held in Liechtenstein, a principality with a population of 26,000.

She had vanished from her villa in Erlenbach near Zurich weeks ago. According to press reports, she left behind $3.3 million in unpaid bills and other debts.

Von Thyssen's wealth is estimated to be around $1 billion. He also owns one of the world's finest private art collections.

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